This Week in Kpop: January 4-10, 2015

Jonghyun Solo Debut

This Week in Kpop began slowly, sleepily even, then suddenly awoke with a mad fury. There was Jonghyun's dramatic solo debut, Mad Clown's angry new album, Hello Venus' salacious new video, and EXID's first music program wins. Yes, that's plural. Even Jewelry's disbandment couldn't slow this week down (though we would like to reflect on that, just for a bit). Enough with the introduction, let's get started!

Jonghyun's "Crazy (Guilty Pleasure)" featuring Iron

It's safe to say that this week belongs to Jonghyun. We were wowed by the smooth, mature sound of Jonghyun's single and some visually stunning images in the video. It seems more polished than Taemin's release last year (though arguably less fun), and we're glad that SM went in a different direction with Jonghyun's solo turn. With major releases coming in a slow trickle to start the year, Jonghyun has a real chance to dominate the first few weeks of 2015. There's a lot to like about this release, and we'll be reviewing the whole mini-album next week. We have high hopes.

We have to wonder: Is this the beginning of SM Entertainment's redemption? We already have an Amber solo coming out later in the year, something we've been begging for. Could we also expect a long-rumored collaboration between sisters Jessica and Krystal? And then, maybe, just maybe, an SNSD comeback that the fans deserve? How about a year where no one leaves EXO? We doubt that all of our SM dreams will come true, but if SM plays their cards right, maybe they'll regain some of the credibility they've lost in 2014. Jonghyun's solo debut is a strong start.

Oh, and this came out too.

Yeah, SM is definitely on the road to redemption.

Mad Clown's "Fire" featuring Jinsil

Mad Clown had a HUGE week scoring an all-kill on ten, yes ten, music charts. It's also so appropriate that EXID's Hani is featured in the video (though a bit odd that she lip-sync's Jinsil's part of the song). Mad Clown's rapping is expectantly stellar, and very, very angry, but who could really be that mad at Hani? After her fancam, she's captured the attention and adoration of just about all Kpop fans - in this video she's stunning, even (especially) when she's smashing things. But anyway, this is a killer release from Mad Clown and we'll be listening to this song, and his new album, for quite some time! Check it out!

Hello Venus' "Wiggle Wiggle"

What can one say about a video like Hello Venus' "Wiggle Wiggle?" After a steady and really ingenious build up of practice videos and dance videos and teasers (we'll be writing more about this next week), Hello Venus finally released their racy official video for "Wiggle Wiggle." The reaction has not been unexpected, with some decrying the end of Kpop as we know it, some using derogatory name calling, and a pubescent contingent that is in a state of absolute glee. Make no mistake, Hello Venus will not be startled by any subsequent outcry. They're going all in - vying for your attention or dismay. While the song is better than "Sticky Sticky," we're not in love with it either. But that's to be expected too. We'll take a closer look at this release next week, as we feel like Hello Venus is attempting something very interesting (and slightly troubling) with "Wiggle Wiggle."

NC.A's "Coming Soon" 

Now, here's the Kpop we can recognize! No, NC.A's "Coming Soon" won't light up the charts, but it's a light song with a cute, awkward video (NC.A's dancing = awkward, intentionally?). This is a fun video that's worth a look, especially with these types of Kpop videos becoming increasingly rare.

Jewelry's Demise and the Smash Hit that Never Was

Jewelry had their long-standing tenure in Kpop end unceremoniously this week, with the announcement from Star Empire of the group's disbandment. Though we sadly doubt that many will mourn the group's end, we feel that Jewelry, even this more recent iteration, was underrated, and they, at the very least, had one killer song that should have, could have, and maybe would have been a major hit. If only. You can read about Jewelry's demise right here.

King and Queen: Episode 1

Have you read our new fan fiction Kpop drama, King & Queen? It's everything you'd wish for from a Kpop fan fiction, and more. Every Friday we'll be posting a new episode. So get with it and read episode one right here!

EXID wins! 

After EXID's dramatic return to music programs, we've been waiting anxiously to see EXID take first place at least once. Last week they were so close, but Apink was just too dominant. But all hope was not lost. This week, EXID won not just in M! Countdown but also Music Bank, and, since we love seeing our favorite idols crying (happily), we've watched the video above maybe a dozen times already. In a way, it's perfect that this has happened at the beginning of 2015. Maybe it will set the tone for more hopeful, kinder year.

January 4-10, 2015

And that was This Week in Kpop! We're excited that the industry has awoken and is starting to get back into the release cycle after all of the end of the year shenanigans. We're excited to get back into the crazy world of Kpop! Be safe, and we'll see you next week!


  1. EXID and Mad Clown dominated this week. Kinda feel sad for Jonghyun.


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